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Fugitive in Time was the third story in the audio anthology The Eighth Doctor: Time War: Volume Three, produced by Big Finish Productions. It was written by Roland Moore and featured Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor, Rakhee Thakrar as Bliss, Adèle Anderson as Major Tamasan and Michael Jayston as the Valeyard.

Publisher's summary[]

Returning a favour for Major Tamasan, the Doctor and Bliss accompany her to extract a dangerous fugitive from an isolated medieval world.

Shonnath is the last of her kind and has her reasons to be wary of Time Lords. What's more, the Daleks are also on her trail – and when the Doctor and friends arrive, the enemy is already closer than they think.

Plot[]

The Doctor, Bliss and Major Tamasan fly an Argodian escape pod into the dense atmosphere of Thellian on a reconnaissance mission to find the last of the Helixara, a race believed to have been erased from existence by the Time Lords. They crash.

King Vashko is informed by Chief Scientist Dransino that Lady Shonnath wishes to speak to him on the viewing screen, technology which is new to him. The weary Shonnath has detected what could be interstellar debris but wonders if it could be more and tells Vashko to be ready to collect any fallen technology and to deal with any survivors.

The Argodian escape pod is completely destroyed. The Doctor, Bliss and Tamasan head off, discussing the Helixara and how they were genetic engineers who once killed a Time Lord and stole her TARDIS, using it to spread their race bank throughout time and leading the Time Lords to erase them. Tamasan believes that one has survived and that knowing how they survived time deletion could be useful in the Time War.

Shonnath commends a servant, who obeys her and steps into a glass chamber. She has Dransino set the tracking coordinates and initiate her experiment, causing the servant to disappear. According to Dransino, the tracking coordinates strayed and the servant was sent "nowhere". Shonnath is deteriorating beyond repair and asks Dransino to tell Vashko to provide more volunteers for the experiment as she wants to escape from this planet.

The Doctor, Bliss and Tamasan come across the wreckages of numerous alien spacecraft destroyed by the atmosphere before having the technology harvested. One of the ships has modified Dalek technology which seems to have been used to send a Dalek agent. They enter the castle and watch Vashko make a speech about the scientific advancements that Shonnath has bestowed upon them since coming from the stars and gives Dransino the choice of selecting volunteers to repay that debt. The crowd are eager to be chosen and the Doctor, Bliss and Tamasan too raise their hands; the Doctor and Tamasan are chosen and Vashko picks Bliss as a new lady-in-waiting.

In the castle, Bliss sees the Great Tapestry showing Shonnath's arrival and how Vashko saved her, after which she provided technological advancements and began to ask for volunteers to be sent to the stars. Bliss dresses Vashko for entertaining guests and hears Shonnath report that their crashed escape pod has been detected and is to be salvaged. Vashko orders Bliss to accompany him and his riders.

Outside of the atmosphere of Thellian, the Dalek Time Strategist receives communication from the Dalek agent on the planet below; the message says that Shonnath's experiment failed and, until it is operational, the Daleks cannot set the transmat as a destination to transport themselves. The Time Strategist orders the agent to expedite matters.

The Doctor and Tamasan are introduced to Shonnath, whom they are to help build the transmat. The Doctor determines that the transmat, not having a destination, must be intended to hook into the Garlads' already-established transmat system. Tamasan does not care, however, only wanting to find out how Shonnath survived. At the point of Dransino's gun, the Doctor is ordered to operate the transmat's controls.

Vashko finds that the Argodian pod is almost entirely useless aside from a medical scanner and a device which detects the Dalek spacecraft above. Whilst the riders return, he shows Bliss a waterfall which she is unable to name, outing her as a non-Thellian; when she claims to be an Argodian, Vashko asks where her two companions are.

The Doctor shuts down the transmat, refusing to send a man to his death, but Dransino activates it himself and kills the volunteer. Vashko contacts Shonnath and outs the Doctor and Tamasan as off-worlders, which leads her to put the Doctor to work with the circuits whilst Tamasan is imprisoned with Bliss to ensure his cooperation. Using an antenna, Bliss fashions a skeleton key to allow her and Tamasan to escape their cell.

The Time Strategist is informed by his agent that the three volunteers are allegedly Argodian and commands them to exterminate them if they attempt to sabotage the transmat.

Shonnath tells the Doctor that she survived time deletion by distorting her genetic code before falling into the Time Vortex and being transported to Thellian. To get her the help that she needs, the Doctor promises to do his bets to make the transmat work. He expresses his suspicion of Dransino, who seems to have technical knowledge beyond what a Thellian should, and tells Shonnath that he suspects that there is a Dalek agent nearby. Shonnath has never heard of the Daleks but trusts Dransino and has the Doctor continue his work.

Bliss manages to unlock the cell door just before Tamasan is contacted by the Doctor; he tells them to search for Shonnath's genetic distortion tool and says that Dransino might be a Dalek agent.

Having realised that the Doctor knows about the Helixara despite them having been erased from time, Shonnath suspects that he is a Time Lord and identifies him as such with medical technology before having him placed on a torture rack. The Doctor confesses that he came for the genetic modifier and Shonnath reveals that she only wants to leave Thellian to get revenge against the Time Lords for erasing her husband and son. However, the Doctor reminds her that she can only leave Thellian with his help and completes the transmat, asking her not to pursue vengeance.

Bliss finds the genetic modifier hidden in the Great Tapestry before she and Tamasan are taken prisoner by Vashko, revealing himself to be a Dalek duplicate.

The Doctor promises Shonnath that the Time Lords will not harm her if she hands over the genetic modifier, something which she should do to keep the Daleks from winning the Time War. When Bliss and Tamasan are brought in with it, there is a scuffle and Shonnath takes it. Daleks emerge through the transmat before the Doctor is able to return them, but not before Shonnath is wounded. A second wave of Daleks arrive and exterminate the now-superfluous Vashko. They offer to bring back the Helixara in return for Shonnath's device, but she gives it to the Doctor.

Tamasan tells the Doctor that she will help Shonnath whilst he and Bliss work on the transmat and rejoins them shortly after, telling them that Shonnath had died from her injuries. The Doctor operates the transmat, threatening Tamasan if he finds out that she killed Shonnath, and commands Dransino to smash the machine once he has departed. The Time Strategist has the transmat intercepted and brings the Doctor to his ship, but he is reunited with Bliss and Tamasan at a waystation when Dransino destroys the machine.

A transmat activates and the Valeyard appears, uncertain of what has happened to him.

Cast[]

References[]

  • The Doctor, Bliss and Tamasan pose as Argodians.
  • In the last eight years, Shonnath has introduced multiple innovations to Thellian, including the use of waterfall for power, the conversion of that energy into heat and light.
  • Bliss is selected to become a lady-in-waiting to the king, Vashko.
  • The Great Tapestry in the palace depicts the story of Shonnath on Thellian.
  • On Thellian, the King wears redred for meeting with politicians, green for entertaining guests and black for war.
  • The Argodian medical scanner can diagnose illness, as well as assess physiology. Shonnath uses it to confirm that the Doctor is a Time Lord.
  • Shonnath uses a torture rack to interrogate the Doctor.
  • Shonnath had a husband and child before her species, the Helixara, was deleted from time.

Notes[]

to be added

Continuity[]

to be added

External links[]

Footnotes[]

  1. Not credited in the audio credits
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